Tiki-taka had revolutionised football when Barcelona and Pep Guardiola perfected the art of short passing and slow tempo to steadily wear down opponents.
The new style became the defining aspect of Barcelona's play. It was only when Guardiola introduced his style to Bayern Munich, and the two faced off against each other, that Barcelona's possession statistics fell below 50 percent in a match.
But football is clearly undergoing another revolution. Possession is no longer the focal point of a successful strategy, or at least, not in the way that tiki-taka characterises possession football.
Slow tempo and possession consistently above 60 percent is being worn away by swift, attacking football. The consistency of constant possession is being brushed aside by teams who have organised defending and ruthless counter attacking skills.
One year ago it had been Bayern over Barcelona in the Champions League semi finals. Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery had been the epitome of Bayern's swift play. They had served as the antithesis to Barcelona's progressive build up.
Barcelona's backwards and sideways passing was shown up by direct play and powerful running. They looked out of ideas, out of magic, out of the game, and ultimately, out of the tournament.
But one year later, a new Bayern, a classic Pep Guardiola side, was defeated in a similar fashion. Real Madrid's ruthless attacks were a stark contrast to Bayern's slow build up play.
Real Madrid passed the ball forward 20 yards, while Bayern, rather inevitably, were stagnant with four-yard passes backwards or sideways. Robben was left frustrated without any space to run into because Bayern were too slow in bringing the ball up into the final third. In contrast, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo were able to run free for 50 yards and unleash their world record fee worthy abilities.
While tiki-taka is by no means dying, it's fallacies have been exposed. The footballing world is evolving past tiki-taka.
Indicators of the movement past tiki-taka have included the Confederations Cup final when Brazil emphatically defeated Spain, and the two Champions League semi finals that were aforementioned.
Natural selection and the Darwinian theory state the human race is steadily evolving towards perfection. Although soccer will never reach perfection, natural selection seems not to be selecting tiki-taka anymore. A new breed of football is being born into the limelight.
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